Autonomous driving in Germany

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Seven German universities want to develop autonomous car

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In the USA, companies such as Google and Waymo have been testing autonomous cars for years. In Germany there are automated driving functions from many manufacturers, but a real one "Robot car" Lies far away. In contrast, seven universities want to do something.

Just apply to the car to pick up the child from school – without having to put mother to the wheel. Such scenarios have been a dream so far. There are still no market -like autonomous cars. But many companies are researching this, among other things, the Google sister company Waymo, but also the travel agent Uber and German car companies.

Autonomous electric car by 2022

Now seven German universities together with companies want to work together in the next four years in developing an autonomously driving electric car. The vehicle should do without a steering wheel. The centerpiece is the computer, which is networked with sensors of your own vehicle, sensors in the street space and other vehicles, as the Institute for motor vehicles (IKA) at RWTH Aachen announced on Thursday when the Unicaragil project started.

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"Without human help, the vehicle must always be able to pass from security -critical situations into a safe state," said overall coordinator at the IKA, Lutz Eckstein, about Unicaragil. In situations where the system is not a way out – for example, if another car parked on the street in the second row and a pull -out line would have to be run over – a driving guide in a control center must decide what to do.

Technology must be update-capable

The planned security technology consists of individual modules that can always be brought up to date, almost like an update on a computer. These components would have to be tested and not the whole vehicle, according to the conviction.“The design of a safe driving is absolutely in the foreground. That is a basic requirement for acceptance by society, ”says Eckstein. According to the latest study by TuV Rheinland, drivers in Germany, China and the USA are convinced that traffic safety will decrease with increasing automation.

Driver passed out – automatic: Hopefully you will never need this emergency system

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Site/Wochit Driver passed out – automatic: Hopefully you will never need this emergency system

In Aachen, the StreetScooter electric delivery van has already been developed, which the post is now building itself for its own deliverers. The city car E also developed in Aachen.Go should go into series production in May.At the end of Unicaragil, four prototypes are to be built: in addition to the family helper a taxi, a delivery vehicle and a shuttle. "We want to create the basics that are neutrally usable for everyone to prepare a new standard on how to design such automated vehicles," said Eckstein. It still has to be shown whether a car manufacturer uses this template.

The five levels of autonomous driving

The terms autonomous and automated driving are often synonymous, there are important differences. These are the five levels of autonomous driving:

  • Level 0: The driver controls the car completely.
  • Level 1: There are assistance systems such as distance control or lane change warning, which only support the driver. This technology is widespread today down to the small car area.
  • Level 2: This is the level at which modern vehicles of the upper middle class and upper class are already located. Sub -automated systems can take over certain functions, such as track guidance or partial automatic parking. Models such as the current Mercedes E-Class, Teslas Model S and Model X or the BMW 5 Series are already dominating the level 2. At Tesla, even more functions were temporarily unlocked, but they were put back after a few incidents.
  • Level 3: This is the (high) automated driving, in which the driver must be able to intervene at any time, but may also turn to other things if the system is activated. With a warning time, the driver can be asked to take the lead again. Level 3 is developed as standard, for example in the Audi A8 .
  • Level 4: At the fully automated driving the driver can even intervene if the system fails, but as a rule the car should take over everything. This level is currently being tested in practice by various car manufacturers and suppliers as well as tech groups.
  • Level 5: At the actual autonomous driving is no longer required. You no longer need a steering wheel or other controls. The occupants become pure passengers.

Autonomous driving: legal questions

What are automated vehicles and what happens in the event of an accident? These are the most important sticking points for the digital car age:

  • Liability: The insurance law situation of automated driving has actually been clarified. All cars that master the level 3 must have an accident data memory (black box) on board. In principle, the following should apply: If the driver has driven, he must also be liable. The car drove automatically and there is a technical error, the car manufacturer is liable.
  • Right of registration: The EU and 50 countries worldwide are currently working on new rules for autonomous and automated driving. So far, the NORK 79 standard has ruled that automated interventions can only be carried out up to a maximum of 10 km/h (for example with parking machines). In the future they should be allowed up to 130 km/h. Incidentally, there is a regulatory patch carpet for the supposedly progressive USA that do not sit in the committee: each state decides on the approval of the systems itself. In New York, for example, it still applies that the driver must have at least one hand on the steering wheel.
  • Behavior right: The Vienna Convention sets the rough framework for international traffic rules and was adapted to the requirements of automated driving in 2014. It must then be implemented in national law – which has already happened in the German Road Traffic Act.

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Everything about electromobility

On our e-mobility portal site you will find all e-vehicles & hybrids available on the German market with technical data, prices, delivery times and model comparisons. There are ongoing insider news, tests of all important vehicles, an overview of charging stations and a range computer.

You can also arrange a test drive for your desired car for free and start e-mobility easily.


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6 thoughts on “Autonomous driving in Germany”

  1. Autonomous car is how
    Tram without rails. Such a car comes alone brings you from A to B and you drive … Tram without rails. Such a car comes alone brings you from A to B and drives again. You don’t need to buy a driver’s license and don’t buy a car. No taxes, no insurance, no maintenance. That must be cheaper than the purchase system. An interesting development, for older people and children also in rural areas, where you often depend on two cars. If you want to drive further away, you have to switch to change, the train also works. Even if you don’t want that, you will not be able to stop the development. In 20 years the world will be different.

  2. A fully autonomous one
    There will be no car if the infrastructure is not created. The entire road traffic is designed for human needs. The streets must be made digitally legible. Too many sensors in the vehicles that only work in certain weather conditions. When dirt gets on it, it is often over. Such systems are far too unreliable. There is little to do because the problems are system -related. I can only hope that there will be no approval for such vehicles in the next few years.

  3. forget it
    For networking the traffic, we lack the digital infrastructure, without networking autonomous driving is a danger for everyone involved. If such a car in a radio cake, it becomes a rolling bomb.

  4. Very easily….!
    Everything is so easy….No it is not ! And sometimes quite logically thought – there will be no autonomous driving in 2030 ! Auxiliary system yes – nothing more.

  5. 7 Unis drive monitoring …
    …and incapacitation of their own citizens would have been the right heading. I don’t need an autonomous car that can be monitored and persecuted by the state and private companies at every turn. Again, it is only about circumcision the citizen to circumcise his individual freedoms and to make it even more glass with his data than before. Not with me! In life I do not trust myself or even my family of such a system. I’m curious when the first hackers strike very easily like in our high -security defense ministry – then I don’t want to sit in such a thing. I want to steer my vehicle myself, basta!

  6. future
    A pilot for every car in the control center? Millions of cars could come into critical situations promptly? A stranger makes decisions when my child sits in the car? The universities should save this development. If you do something good, the now How and the idea goes abroad again. Saves the tax money.


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